26,000 pack Pittodrie as Elton John's world tour rolls into Aberdeen's sell-out gig

SIR Elton John was in Aberdeen last night for his sold-out concert at the city’s Pittodrie football stadium.

The 57-year-old performer played his only Scottish show at the venue in front of a capacity crowd of 26,000 people.

He is currently midway through a tour that has taken in dates in both the United States and Britain, as well as France, Cyprus and the Scandinavian countries.

The Aberdeen performance is estimated to have brought benefits worth about 500,000 to the local economy and raised the profile of Pittodrie as a venue.

The singer recently said he enjoys playing live more than ever, although he explained that the hectic schedule of being on the road meant that he occasionally forgot his own lyrics.

The superstar’s arrival in the North-east has not been without consequences.

Aberdeen’s Kings Links golf course - near Pittodrie - was to have played host to its annual championship final yesterday. However, it was decided to move the competition to next Friday, after fears that the noise and activity that come with such a large concert would ruin players’ concentration.

A row also erupted after it was revealed that special permission had been granted for Sir Elton to fly out of Aberdeen Airport at 11:30pm; restrictions at the airport mean aircraft are normally not allowed to take off after 11pm or land after 11:30pm.

Councillor Scott Cassie, the city planning convener, who approved the request, said earlier this week it was perfectly reasonable that a man of Sir Elton’s stature should be allowed to fly. "I was asked if I could extend the take-off time, and I said yes," said Mr Cassie. "It means that Elton can play on a bit and not rush away to get an early flight."

The airport’s opening hours are currently the subject of a planning application by BAA Aberdeen, which is asking for round the clock flights, which it claims would boost the area’s economy.